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Cloudmarker is a cloud monitoring tool and framework.



What is Cloudmarker?

Cloudmarker is a cloud monitoring tool and framework. It can be used as
a ready-made tool that audits your Azure or GCP cloud environments as
well as a framework that allows you to develop your own cloud monitoring
software to audit your clouds.

As a monitoring tool, it performs the following actions:

  • Retrieves data about each configured cloud using the cloud APIs.
  • Saves or indexes the retrieved data into each configured storage
    system or indexing engine.
  • Analyzes the data for potential issues and generates events that
    represent the detected issues.
  • Saves the events to configured storage or indexing engines as well as
    sends the events as alerts to alerting destinations.

Each of the above four aspects of the tool can be configured via a
configuration file.

For example, the tool can be configured to pull data from Azure and
index its data in Elasticsearch while it also pulls data from GCP and
indexes the GCP data in MongoDB. Similarly, it is possible to configure
the tool to check for unencrypted disks in Azure, generate events for
it, and send them as alerts by email while it checks for insecure
firewall rules in both Azure and GCP, generate events for them, and save
those events in MongoDB.

This degree of flexibility to configure audits for different clouds in
different ways comes from the fact that Cloudmarker is designed as a
combination of lightweight framework and a bunch of plugins that do the
heavylifting for retrieving cloud data, storing the data, analyzing
the data, generating events, and sending alerts. These four types of
plugins are formally known as cloud plugins, store plugins, event
plugins, and alert plugins, respectively.

As a result of this plugin-based architecture, Cloudmarker can also be
used as a framework to develop your own plugins that extend its
capabilities by adding support for new types of clouds or data sources,
storage or indexing engines, event generation, and alerting

Why Cloudmarker?

One might wonder why we need a new project like this when similar
projects exist. When we began working on this project in 2017, we were
aware of similar tools that supported AWS and GCP but none that
supported Azure at that time. As a result, we wrote our own tool to
support Azure. We later added support for GCP as well. What began as a
tiny proof of concept gradually turned into a fair amount of code, so we
thought, we might as well share this project online, so that others
could use it and see if they find value in it.

So far, some of the highlights of this project are:

  • It is simple. It is easy to understand how to use the four types of
    plugins (clouds, stores, events, and alerts) to perform an audit.
  • It is excellent at creating an inventory of the cloud environment.
  • The data inventory it creates is easy to query.
  • It is good at detecting insecure firewall rules and unencrypted disks.
    New detection mechanisms are coming up.

We also realize that we can add a lot more functionality to this project
to make it more powerful too. See the Wishlist section below to see
new features we would like to see in this project. Our project is hosted
on GitHub at https://github.com/cloudmarker/cloudmarker. Contributions
and pull requests are welcome.

We hope that you would give this project a shot, see if it addresses
your needs, and provide us some feedback by posting a comment in our
feedback thread
or by creating a
new issue.


Since Cloudmarker is not just a tool but also a framework, a lot of its
functionality can be extended by writing plugins. However, Cloudmarker
also comes bundled with a default set of plugins that can be used as is
without writing a single line of code. Here is a brief overview of the
features that come bundled with Cloudmarker:

  • Perform scheduled or ad hoc audits of cloud environment.
  • Retrieve data from Azure and GCP.
  • Store or index retrieved data in Elasticsearch, MongoDB, Splunk, and
    the file system.
  • Look for insecure firewall rules and generate firewall rule events.
  • Look for unencrypted disks (Azure only) and generate events.
  • Send alerts for events via email and Slack as well as save alerts in
    one of the supported storage or indexing engines (see the third point
  • Normalize firewall rules from Azure and GCP which are in different
    formats to a common object model ("com") so that a single query or
    event rule can search for or detect issues in firewall rules from both


  • Add more event plugins to detect different types of insecure
  • Normalize other types of data into a common object model ("com")
    just like we do right now for firewall rules.


Perform the following steps to set up Cloudmarker.

  1. Create a virtual Python environment and install Cloudmarker in it:

    python3 -m venv venv
    . venv/bin/activate
    pip3 install cloudmarker
  2. Run sanity test:

    The above command runs a mock audit with mock plugins that generate
    some mock data. The mock data generated can be found at
    /tmp/cloudmarker/. Logs from the tool are written to the standard
    output as well as to /tmp/cloudmarker.log.

    The -n or --now option tells Cloudmarker to run right now
    instead of waiting for a scheduled run.

To learn how to configure and use Cloudmarker with Azure or GCP clouds,
see Cloudmarker Tutorial.


This section describes how to set up a development environment for
Cloudmarker. This section is useful for those who would like to
contribute to Cloudmarker or run Cloudmarker directly from its source.

  1. We use primarily three tools to perform development on this project:
    Python 3, Git, and Make. Your system may already have these tools.
    But if not, here are some brief instructions on how they can be

    On macOS, if you have Homebrew installed, then
    these tools can be be installed easily with the following command:

    On a Debian GNU/Linux system or in another Debian-based Linux
    distribution, they can be installed with the following commands:

    apt-get update
    apt-get install python3 python3-venv git make

    On a CentOS Linux distribution, they can be installed with these

    yum install centos-release-scl
    yum install git make rh-python36
    scl enable rh-python36 bash

    Note: The scl enable command starts a new shell for you to use
    Python 3.

    On any other system, we hope you can figure out how to install these
    tools yourself.

  2. Clone the project repository and enter its top-level directory:

    git clone https://github.com/cloudmarker/cloudmarker.git
    cd cloudmarker
  3. Create a virtual Python environment for development purpose:

    This creates a virtual Python environment at ~/.venv/cloudmarker.
    Additionally, it also creates a convenience script named venv in
    the current directory to easily activate the virtual Python
    environment which we will soon see in the next point.

    To undo this step at anytime in future, i.e., delete the virtual
    Python environment directory, either enter
    rm -rf venv ~/.venv/cloudmarker or enter make rmvenv.

  4. Activate the virtual Python environment:

  5. In the top-level directory of the project, enter this command:

    python3 -m cloudmarker -n

    This generates mock data at /tmp/cloudmarker. This step serves as
    a sanity check that ensures that the development environment is
    correctly set up and that the Cloudmarker audit framework is running

  6. Now that the project is set up correctly, you can create a
    cloudmarker.yaml to configure Cloudmarker to scan/audit your
    cloud or you can perform more development on the Cloudmarker source
    code. See Cloudmarker Tutorial for more details.

  7. If you have set up a development environment to perform more
    development on Cloudmarker, please consider sending a pull request to
    us if you think your development work would be useful to the

  8. Before sending a pull request, please run the unit tests, code
    coverage, linters, and document generator to ensure that no existing
    test has been broken and the pull request adheres to our coding

    make test
    make coverage
    make lint
    make docs

    To run these four targets in one shot, enter this “shortcut” target:

    Open htmlcov/index.html with a web browser to view the code
    coverage report.

    Open docs/_build/html/index.html with a web browser to view the
    generated documentation.


Here is a list of useful links about this project:


To report bugs, suggest improvements, or ask questions, please create a
new issue at http://github.com/cloudmarker/cloudmarker/issues.


This is free software. You are permitted to use, copy, modify, merge,
publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of it, under the
terms of the MIT License. See LICENSE.rst for the complete license.

This software is provided WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied
LICENSE.rst for the complete disclaimer.


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